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Social policies and labor market outcomes in Latin America and the Caribbean: a review of the existing evidence

Bosch, Mariano and Manacorda, Marco (2012) Social policies and labor market outcomes in Latin America and the Caribbean: a review of the existing evidence. CEP Occasional Papers (CEPOP32). The London School of Economics and Political Science, Center of Economic Performance, London, UK.

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Abstract

Latin America and the Caribbean have become in the last decade or so a formidable laboratory for the design and implementation of innovative social policies. In the face of an unprecedented surge in the number of non-contributory social assistance benefit programs in the region, there is a renewed interest - among policy makers and academics alike - as to whether such programs have "perverse" labor market effects, in particular discouraging participation and formal employment. After having revisited the theoretical arguments behind this concern, this paper reviews the existing quasi experimental empirical evidence for the region. Our reading of the evidence suggests that, consistent with zero income elasticity of leisure among the poor, social assistance has no large significant effects on participation and overall employment, other than possibly among the elderly. Some particular policies are, however, generating a substitution away from formal to informal employment.

Item Type: Monograph (Report)
Official URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/
Additional Information: © 2012 The Authors
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2014 09:58
Last Modified: 18 Jun 2020 23:32
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/58003

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